Sunday, June 10, 2012

Uglies by Scott Westerfeld

Uglies is the most recent book I've completed. Many of my friends had read this book in middle school, but none of them had never really recommended it to me. I did hear it was good, and it showed up in my recommendations list on Goodreads and on Amazon, but I still didn't go out of my way to read this book. I finally read it, though, when I found the third book, Specials, at a used book store and bought it. Since I never, ever, ever start in the middle of a series, I had to wait until I had a chance to go to the library and pick up the first book. It was a very easy read for me, but it was also a great book. I am a big fan of dystopian novels, so this was definitely my kind of story.
     "Tally is about to turn sixteen, and she can't wait. Not for her license- for turning pretty. In Tally's world, your sixteenth birthday brings an operation that turns you from a repellent ugly into a stunningly attractive pretty and catapults you into a high-tech paradise where your only job is to have a really great time. In just a few weeks, Tally will be there. But Tally's new friend Shay isn't sure she wants to be pretty. She'd rather risk life on the outside. When Shay runs away, Tally learns about a whole new side of the pretty world- and it isn't very pretty. The authorities offer Tally the worst choice she can imagine: find her friend and turn her in, or never turn pretty at all. The choice Tally makes changes her world forever." (Taken from the back cover of the book)
     When I first started reading the book, I thought what a lot of other people probably think at some point in their life: if only I could get an operation that made me pretty! I'm positive that some people think this, because many people like celebrities get liposuction, plastic surgery, botox, and other types of cosmetic surgery. The problem in this story is that they don't get a choice. They are brainwashed into thinking that they aren't pretty at all, and that they need the operation. The part that frustrated me the most was that Tally took way too long to realize that there are more important things in life than being pretty, and also that it is wrong to betray your friends. She was planning to go to great lengths to get her friend in trouble, just so that she could be pretty. So her character irritated me in the beginning, but she did change a lot throughout the book. I was sort of hoping that there wouldn't be a romantic aspect in this story, because I was getting a little fed up with all of the relationship problems that have been in the majority of the books I've been reading recently, but lo and behold, a boy comes along. An "ugly" boy who is 18 and never lived in Tally's town, or any town where they got the pretty operation. He tells Tally that she is beautiful, and who can resist that? He is a nice guy, but their entire relationship is based on Tally's lies, which pissed me off a bit. But Tally was very human, which made her character very believable, which is probably why I liked the book so much. I give this book 4 out of 5 stars, and I recommend it to anyone who is a fan of dystopian novels.

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